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2018 XC60 T6 R-Design w Polestar optimization
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Saturday my youngest (aka Thing 3) and I headed out to the hills of eastern Ohio and took our first stab at car top camping, and I have it say it was a resounding success; the trip was pretty much everything we could've wanted. We learned exactly why roof top tents are totalllllly worth it (more on that later); and we learned exactly what things we absolutely need to remember to bring . . . like pillows. :eek: :confused:

Anywho - I could not sing the praises of the XC60 (aka Bullwinkle) enough. The "campground" we stayed at is actually a huge working farm with seven campsites set up around the property. Getting to our particular camp site required driving on a long, and sometimes steep (maybe 30* / 58% grade), grass "road" (really just a path mowed out). Originally the campground owner looked at Bullwinkle and said "You've got a really nice car here, and this site requires a bit of off roading. I can move you to a site that's closer to the main road if you want." :D And who could blame her? I'm sure they get a lot of city folk on all season tires trying to go places they shouldn't. But this is exactly why I put Yokohama Geolandar A/T G015 tires on! Needless to say, Bullwinkle did just fine. I put him in Off Road mode and just followed the owner (who was riding on an ATV) right up to the camp site . . . .no problem.

Bullwinkle really shined, however, on Sunday morning when it was time to leave. Prior to that - at around 3:30am - we got slammed by a massive pop-up thunderstorm; we got around 2" of rain in less than 2 hours. Fortunately, we were in a roof top tent and not a ground tent, so for us it was mainly an inconvenient sleep disturbance. The tent (a Thule / Tepui Foothill) did great and kept us completely dry. We got a teensy bit of water coming in one of the mesh sides when the rain was really coming down and splashing up off of the top of the car, but other than that nothing - the rain fly kept everything dry and sent the water away from the tent. The bigger thing was that the rain turned the approach road into a slippery wet mess. Yet once again, Bullwinkle did fine as we departed the campsite. I just took it slow, used Off Road mode again, and Bullwinkle's brain took care of the rest.

So - equipped with the right tires, the XC60 can easily be used as a camping vehicle. If camping is something you've thought about but were never quite sure of, I would encourage you to take the leap. I don't think you'll be disappointed. And if my R Design with Polestar Optimization can handle it, yours probably can too.

The site
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Thing 3 sticking his head out
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The approach road
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2021 XC60 T8/Recharge
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309 Posts
Great shots! The XC60 really handles the outdoors better than I expected. For what it's worth, you probably would have been fine with constant AWD coming in. I've only had to hit off-road once and it was largely for clearance trying to cross a snow berm after a 2ft storm.
 
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